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Center For Intercultural Organizing

Rating: 4.89 stars   72 reviews 5,388

Nonprofit Issues:

Civil Rights, Race


700 N Killingsworth Street Portland OR 97217 USA


The Center for Intercultural Organizing (CIO) is a diverse, grassroots membership organization working to build a multi-racial, multicultural movement for immigrant and refugee rights.


Over nearly a decade, CIO has engaged thousands of individuals from diverse cultural, ethnic, and religious backgrounds, trained new immigrant and refugee community leaders, produced hundreds of educational events and mobilized countless immigrant and refugee community members to participate in civic life, and continually responded to individual incidents of discrimination and harassment in our community as they arise.

Target demographics:

immigrants and refugees from over 70 countries of origin.

Direct beneficiaries per year:

hundreds of immigrants and refugees, who together advocate for just policies that will improve the lives of thousands

Geographic areas served:

Oregon and Southwest Washington


Community Education: CIO educates immigrants, refugees and U.S.-born allies on pressing community issues and strengthens and supports existing efforts to bring visibility to immigrant and refugee struggles. Civic Engagement and Policy Advocacy: Our civic engagement program provides a pathway for immigrants and refugees to participate in democratic processes through training programs, hands-on projects and collective action that produce concrete improvements in their lives. Organizing and Mobilization: CIO assists immigrant and refugee community members in building the organizing skills necessary to impact policies that affect them and to work collaboratively, mobilizing diverse constituencies. Intergenerational Leadership Development: CIO develops new leaders through a signature yearlong leadership development program, through strategic trainings, and through on-the-ground leadership positions within our campaigns.

2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Reviews for Center For Intercultural Organizing

Rating: 5 stars  

CIO is one of, if not, the best organization of its kind I have participated in. I was at some of the retreats and workshops they organized, and what I learned during these programs was immense, and whose relevance could not be overemphasized. Numerous times during these, and other programs, I found myself feeling amazed, pleasantly surprised, and sometimes struck with outright astonishment at the information I was absorbing, all of which laid just how ignorant I was regarding things that really matter to me and the community at large. I came out of these programs greatly informed, empowered, equipped with great motivation to better myself, and to be actively involved in improving the conditions in my community.
Thank you CIO, and I hope you long remain within the community and continue doing what you are doing.

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1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

Going into the PILOT program, I did not quite know what to expect. However, I can confidently and enthusiastically say that I am extremely glad I was allowed to join. It was very eye-opening indeed, and I learned things that I had never known before. The program made me feel a lot more confident than I ever was before, it made me feel empowered with information I never knew before, which in turn further helped enhance my understanding of why things are the way they are, and gave me tools and advice on how I can actively participate and contribute in effecting the positive and needful changes in our social system that it advocates. If I had ever entertained the desire to be a human rights activist, a social justice advocate, or the desire to to follow and engage in the political discourse, but that such desire had become dormant and on the brink of lapsing into passivity due to inactivity, participation in the CIO PILOT program has certainly reawakened it. The staff was remarkable, with an infectious sense of enthusiasm and commitment to what matters to all of us the most. I came out of the program feeling invigorated, and I wish these programs would be conducted more often and made more accessible to larger audiences.

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Rating: 5 stars  

The Center for Intercultural Organizing has been a great partner with us! Their Margins to Mainstream program is connecting communities of color specifically the immigrant and refugee communities to resources, advocacy and community strengthening in a unique way with their Wellness Life Guides. The Wellness Life Guides serve as a bridge for many who are new to the US as well as those who have been her for a while. They have experienced many of the same challenges as the community members they are working with. We are pleased to continue our relationship with this organization.

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

The Center for Intercultural Organizing is an incredible force for community organizing and advocacy in our region. Their breadth is very wide across communities of color, especially immigrant and refugee communities and is evident at any of the events they host. The relevancy and urgency of their mission is strong and their ability to bring communities together impressive. This is a truly unique organization, one that is a consistent leader and stands in solidarity with others on priority issues for the community. CIO has been a key partner for the City of Beaverton in providing leadership training and civic engagement opportunities for underrepresented communities, in helping to increase dialogue between government and community, and in shaping the conversation on equity and inclusion.

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

Center for Intercultural Organizing have a great staff culturally savvy to integrate diverse under represent communities to build up leadership, participation and communication.

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Rating: 5 stars  

The Center for Intercultural Organizing takes on a very tough issue--integrating immigrants into American life--and does it in ways that empower and enrich everyone involved. For the CIO, its not about services, although they do advocate for individuals. The goal is to help New Americans fully participate in their new country. CIO helps people become citizens but also trains them in how to become fully active in their community, learning how to volunteer on citizen advisory committees, on political campaigns and with other local community organizations.
Well run, respectful. I joined the Board so I could learn from their smart and thoughtful approach.

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Rating: 5 stars  

My firm and I have been consistent supporters of the Center for Intercultural Organizing (CIO) for several years now. CIO is one of a select group of non-profits that can be counted on to not only adhere to its mission but to challenge itself year after year on how it can do better and come up with more innovative ways to help the communities it serves and ensure diversity, grass-roots organizing, education, and involvement.

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 4 stars  

I am a consultant who works with a range of non-profit organizations in Oregon & Washington. I have worked with CIO's organizing, advocacy & development staff. CIO's staff stands out as being remarkably committed and dedicated to their work and the organization's mission. The organization is a tremendous resource for our community.

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Role: General Member of the Public
Rating: 5 stars  

Being from a small town in central Washington with very little diversity and a strong migrant worker population. Being a part of CIO and attending functions that center on diversity and cultural awareness is a wonderful way for myself and my daughter to recognize and appreciate benefits to diversity and bring back to my small town new views and a greater understanding of cultural issues and help my area to all work together for change.

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Rating: 5 stars  

CIO demonstrates diversity not only in its programming but also in its employment and volunteering policy. I have met people from all different parts of the world through CIO. I am confident with the continued work of CIO, Oregon will be a better place to live

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Rating: 5 stars  

CIO is led by some of the most conscientious people, with a level of integrity and wisdom that guide the organization's work well. Their values ripple through their mission, practices, staff dynamics, and community engagement. I am proud to partner with them and look forward to co-hosting events together in the future.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Bridge partnerships with a variety of sectors, in order to increase grant opportunities.

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